Advocacy For the Academic Library 1 Advocacy (adapted from ALA) Support for a cause or course of action Informing and persuading Communication Two kinds: 1. Reminding people on an ongoing basis of services, activities, and value
2. Communicating a specific message or advocating for a specific outcome 2 Challenges Economy and soaring prices Increased access and irrational expectations Decreasing usage and more competition Libraries seen as institutions rather than tools 3
Facing Challenges Marketing it is not selling; it is satisfying the needs of the customer by means of the product and the whole cluster of activities associated with creating, delivering and consuming information and information services Public relations promoting what we do Advocacy build campus alliances and partnerships 4
Facing Challenges Most librarians are not trained in marketing, PR and advocacy And, information and information services is a unique type of goods it is not inherently scarce it may not exhibit decreasing value of returns to use, but often increases in value the more it is used it is self-regenerative; the identification of a new piece of knowledge immediately creates
both the demand and the supply although information has obvious value-inuse, it is difficult to establish its market value because it is not scarce 5 Marketing and PR Communication and Education 6 Marketing Customer-driven orientation: asks who are the users, what do they want, how can the library deliver it, and tell them
about it learn about customers needs, values, perceptions and attitudes use questionnaires focus groups secondary research (demographics) Customer focus is the relationship between the customer and the library It requires a two-way dialogue with the target audience 7
Marketing 8 Process internal assessment: availability and strengths of library resources external assessment: political climate; demographics; partnerships with others; funding creating options: identifying new programs and services narrow the selection of options: prioritize based upon importance, likelihood of success, and sustainability
implement the program: promote it thoroughly gather feedback: observations; statistics; surveys; focus groups; interviews revise implementation if necessary Public Relations Intent is to increase the awareness of library services This is who we are, this is what we do tells the librarys story; it is getting the message out Helps to develop the librarys image Tends to be one-way communications from
the library to the target audience 9 Public Relations Effective PR tools disseminating information about the library through newsletters brochures e-mail and e-mail newsletters (membership- or functional-based listservs and mailing lists have been found to be very effective) the Web
annual reports bookmarks news releases 10 Public Relations Effective PR tools (continued) library orientations receptions to celebrate events special events, such as guest speakers PR positively affects external fund-raising Every library should develop a public relations plan
Library directors should get some basic training in public relations 11 Advocacy Building Networks and Support 12 Advocacy What Understand patron needs and perceptions of the library & inform patrons of the librarys value and needs
Promotes the symbiotic relationship between/among institution, library, & community Saying to stakeholders (decisionmakers, funders, etc.) your agenda will be greatly assisted by what we have to offer Attempts to influence the attitudes of a group or individual, more than just lobbying for support; you also want to advocate organizational principles and values Who Everyone within the library, esp. those with direct patron contact Patrons themselves Spreads responsibility- not just directors/administrators involved 13 Advocacy
Why Combat decreased funding and competition from the Internet From an October 2002 McGraw-Hill Ryerson survey Web-based technology is considered by higher education faculty to be the most effective institutional resource in encouraging student success, outweighing the library and tutoring Continuing fallout from the Deserted Library and decreased traffic/usage
When Continuous and ongoing 14 Planning for Advocacy Formal and Informal Approaches 15 Advocacy Encouraging and supporting frontline advocacy Be sure all staff members understand: What frontline advocacy is and why its important that they find their comfort level and practice it
What some strategies for doing this might be. How and why they are valuable to the library. How and why the library is valuable to the college or university and to the community too. How many small positive actions by frontline staff make a big impact on library users and non-users alike. 16 Advocacy Planning Undertake a SWOT analysis- identify: Strengths Weaknesses
Opportunities Threats Based on SWOT, develop goals, objectives, and strategies Identify your audience 17 Advocacy Crafting a message Based on your goals and objectives, outline a specific message you want to communicate
The message should be clear, specific, and brief Know what you want to do, why you want to do it, and how you could accomplish it All staff should know and understand the message 18 Advocacy Communicating your message Identify effective communication paths/tools Remember that different audiences might respond better to different methods
Consider Face-to-face Online (email, blogs/news, SMS, etc.) Traditional print (signs, newspaper, brochures, etc.) 19 Advocacy: Ingredients for Success Understanding your library: environment, mission, value, issues Work within your comfort zone, but be willing to stretch Identify, recognize, and seize opportunities
Get involved Involve others Say thank you 20 Library Initiatives Facing the Challenges 21 Library Initiatives Rethinking Roles: Think of the library as an information center
rather than a traditional library Attract students back to the physical structure with comfy chairs, Starbucks, book groups, author readings, galleries, piped-in music, and information commons. the library as a hospitable environment for reading and studying doing what the users want, not what the librarians want people still need/want community -- the library can provide that does any of this help students learn? 22
Library Initiatives Collaborate with faculty because: hard to track how students are using electronic resources, and whether they are getting useful and valid information faculty = the academy 23 Library Initiatives Taking the Business of the Library Outside of its Walls Librarians need to progress from the
basically passive liaison model to the proactive consulting model, getting out of the libraries and becoming information consultants. consultants work closely with students and 24 scholars in their offices, laboratories, and classrooms. conferring and collaborating with faculty as full partners philosophy of continuous learning culture of learning, and culture of
Library Initiatives Taking the Business of the Library Outside of its Walls Changing roles for librarians as collaborators, integrators, instructional designers, and information consultants as well as new models of instructional delivery not only increase facultylibrarian contact, but also dramatic changes in the nature of librarian-faculty relationships emphasis on information literacy and the role 25
and responsibilities of the academic librarian in teaching and learning in the academy emphasis on assertive communicators who listen well still, the overall faculty-librarian relationship Library Initiatives Taking the Business of the Library Outside of its Walls New role characteristics technologically savvy pedagogically experimental crosses traditional functional lines
media savvy (uses varying means to 26 disseminate information such as web pages and zines) comfortable with varied or multiple perspectives collaborative progression from analysis to synthesis and a progression from control to integration, with learning as the critical organizing principle Library Initiatives Information Literacy
Information literacy is one of the most current advocacy efforts now underway Collaboration with faculty concerning teaching and learning The model suggested by Ken Smith at Arizona library develops offerings that are then publicized to the faculty as ready-made modules 27 Library Initiatives Information Literacy Library must build an image and
reputation as a partner in learning we have something to offer -- information seeking, retrieval and evaluation skills which will improve the productivity of the student, and result in increasing quality of submitted work If we offer information literacy without faculty involvement, it will fail because faculty own the classroom, and the course content. We are assisting them, not usurping their educational and
professional responsibilities. 28 Library Initiatives Information Literacy Faculty need to be convinced of a library role concerning information skills. faculty equate computer skills with information literacy Librarians can be helpful by proactively 29
helping faculty check suspected citations in student papers. We can also help the faculty member meet the campus requirements for student learning outcomes assessment because we can measure an affect from the application of information literacy modules Library Initiatives Distance Education (taking the library to its users) MITs Open Window use of MITs OpenCourseWare project
http://www.ocw.mit.edu/ Expand access to educational materials, making them free and without restriction for noncommercial use Includes: course outline, lecture notes, assignments and reading lists Intellectual; philanthropy in the world of learning 30 Library Initiatives Distance Education (taking the library to its users)
Voluntary faculty involvement Principle some faculty believe that MIT is also obligated to make knowledge freely available in the world and to champion the idea that knowledge is more than just a commodity Promotes exchanges between faculty as 31 they put together their own courses. MIT hopes other universities will follow their lead
Library Initiatives Distance Education (taking the library to its users) Problems?: ambitious (2,000 courses by 2007) unknown costs copyrights and other permissions time consuming 32 Library Initiatives Distance Education (taking the library to its users)
DSpace Archive Electronic archive for preserving the digital 33 works of MIT faculty members Long-term safekeeping of older versions of professors course materials with their embedded links Also serves as an electronic filing cabinet for course components created by MIT professors (accessed by other professors looking at simulations, tools and syllabi that are deposited into DSpace. will use metadata
Library Initiatives Distance Education (taking the library to its users) Summary increased accessibility of knowledge, especially pedagogy and content collaboration among faculty facilitates and gives structure and content to groups outside of MIT 34 Library Initiatives
Campus Alliances and Partnerships Students using the library form a student advisory committee Faculty as advocates of the budget the librarian as a partner in instruction via information literacy faculty curriculum committee (they determine the courses to be offered) 35 Library Initiatives
Campus Alliances and Partnerships Anyone who affects your infrastructure Staffing Human Resources Department payroll Technology academic and administrative computing network services 36 Library Initiatives Campus Alliances and Partnerships Anyone who affects your infrastructure
(continued) Facility physical plant department campus master planning department Collections faculty and do not forget the bookstore 37 Library Initiatives Campus Alliances and Partnerships Public Relations Departments Dean of Students
Institutional Research (they have the numbers) Development Office (fund raising and grant writing) Alumni Relations Business Office 38 Library Initiatives Campus Alliances and Partnerships Corporate Education Office they provide courses to businesses be part of the package Corporate Ed can take to a business
Some relationships are, of course, more important than others institutional culture will have much to do with who you should be building alliances and partnering with 39
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